Designing Healthcare for Better Decisions

Oct 15, 2012
During the 2012 Drug Trend Symposium, Dr. Steve Miller and Dr. Glen Stettin discuss big data, intentional design and encouraging better healthcare decisions.

With the Supreme Court ruling on the Affordable Care Act and a presidential election on the horizon, we are facing a new healthcare landscape that demands a revolutionary approach to the way we provide care. Last week, during the 2012 Drug Trend Symposium, more than 900 payors, benefit managers and consultants came together to learn about and embrace emerging opportunities for healthcare innovation.

Among the many innovations discussed and explored was the use of big data in the delivery of better, more personalized and precise care. Express Scripts Chief Medical Officer Dr. Steve Miller introduced the concept of intentional design – a patient-centric approach to the delivery of healthcare.

In our automated pharmacies, before we dispense a prescription, our systems generate a sophisticated algorithm that calculates a variety of data – about the patient, what the medication is, what other medications they are filling, where they live, etc. – to determine precisely when and in which one of our pharmacies the prescription will be filled. This creates operational efficiencies that allow us to safely and accurately fill hundreds of thousands of prescriptions each day.

With intentional design, Dr. Miller suggests we apply that same logic to physician care. By reviewing data from groups of practitioners, we can analyze patterns of influence, connectivity and opportunity, and then design custom interventions for physicians to deliver to their patients. This could help improve care, and have a direct impact on behavior-driven gaps-in-care, such as adherence.

“Data is transforming society in every way. Data creates knowledge and now we have the opportunity to turn that knowledge into action,” Miller said. “Big data and intentional design can truly revolutionize healthcare; we are right on the edge of it.”

Express Scripts CMO Dr Steve Miller Concept Of Intentional Design

Data also plays an integral role in empowering patients to make better health care choices. When presented with the right information in a user-friendly, easily accessible format, patients are more likely to make better health decisions. In his presentation, Dr. Glen Stettin, Express Scripts Senior Vice President of Clinical Research and New Solutions, said payors have an opportunity to “engage with patients and caregivers, wherever they are, and that level of engagement can happen through technology.”

In the Therapeutic Resource Centers (TRCs), Express Scripts pharmacists use data to tailor and personalize their interventions with patients. As we strive to create the optimal user experience, we leverage technology to push these interventions and this information out to the patient, encouraging healthier decisions.

“We can transform healthcare together by redesigning the user experience to make prescription drugs safer, more affordable and accessible,” said Stettin.

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